Monthly Archives: May 2011

“Higher, Daddy, Higher!”

A father throws his son up into the air. (Artwork by Dale M.A. Johnson)
One day I’ll be big.
Way bigger than I am now.
I’ll be taller than my big sister, so she’ll have to be nice to me even when other people are watching.
Maybe I’ll be taller even than my dad, and he’ll have to look up just to see me!
I’ll be stronger and braver, and all my friends will think I’m cool.

But for now, for today
All I want to do is fly.

This is based on an old sketch I drew some time ago. Families and the dynamics of their unique relationships have long been a fascinating subject to me. Brothers and sisters; parents and children; the way they interact. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s the blood bond they share that is not so easily broken? Even though at times, of course, sometimes they wish they were. 😛 On that note, I’m the oldest of my siblings, so I can only wonder what it’s like to have an older brother or sister…

Regardless, the theme of this piece is not siblings but fathers and sons. In hindsight, I guess it’s kind of appropriate, what with Father’s Day coming up and all. Dads that take the time to actually play and talk with their sons are always cool in my book. 🙂

Painted in Photoshop. Time taken: ~3-4 hours. Brief prose intro is nothing special; just something that kept coming to me while I worked. (And it amused me thinking about how the boy’s big sister is implied to be really sweet to him whenever no one else is around to see it.)

The Many Trials of Dale

I wish I enjoyed reading more than I do. I really do. But even when I read fiction that I enjoy, it’s difficult for me. This is not because I have trouble reading–I can read English very well, thank you very much–the problem in fact stems from the fact I cannot turn my brain off. While most people praise reading because it requires the imagination, this is why I loathe it so. I want to enjoy the prose and the narrative, the author’s wordplay and the feeling that it invokes. But instead I’m too busy staging scenes in my head. I’m too busy imagining the story as a movie, an animated series, a comic book; at times, even a video game. I substitute dialog on the fly, change environments and pacing, add entire scenes and characters that are nowhere to be found in the story, often to the point where I can’t remember which parts were the book and which parts only were in my head. At my worst, I’ll physically set the book aside to finish playing through a made-up scene in my head before continuing.

I hate this. It keeps me from enjoying the book, and it’s only gotten worse with age. I’m to the point now to where I do this when watching movies. Is this something everyone else does and actually enjoys, and I just don’t realize it?

Regardless, over the years the best remedy I’ve found is to find enjoyment writing stories instead of reading them. It’s why I have so many half-finished manuscripts littering my hard drive. Unfortunately, I’m my only audience–no one else seems over the years has given them more than a glance, but what else is new–but even more dreadful in my mind is thus: a writer who does not read is nary a writer at all. If I don’t read, can I really improve my craft? I seriously doubt it.

Not to mention I think it’s only aggravating my condition…

This is News

Updated the company website for the first time in a bajillion years. Of note is that I killed off all links to the old news page (which was never really used anyway) and the site map (which was a pain to keep current). From now on the blog will function as the main news page, since that just works better anyway.

All references to “Vision Riders Entertainment, Inc.” that I could find have been removed, except in the terms of use and privacy policy pages which I’ll update some other time maybe. Right now the future of the company is a little uncertain, you see. And by “little” I mean “Ha, ha, wasn’t this business a waste of my time.”